What is Organizing?
Organizing is about leveraging and using power. As teachers, we have tremendous power, but only if we act to together.
Harnessing that power requires effective relationships, built over time through face-to-face conversations that engage, promote self-discovery, and identify shared common issues and the collective action necessary to address them.
“Organizing is about having hard conversations. It is fundamentally about having hard conversations with people and not running away from hard issues. You can’t win a union campaign…if you don’t do that.”
Why Are We Organizing?
Our objective is to build a movement for high member participation so that we can effect change within our schools and win what we and our students need in our next round of bargaining.
Our member-driven organizing campaign, fully realized, will give us an unprecedented opportunity to promote our members’ rights and to fight for the strongest public education system possible.
As we move into contract negotiations in August 2017, we envision a united and mobilized membership, with a teacher from each school in the negotiations room, participating in the process and working with parents in our communities to build common bargaining goals.
Together, we can and will make the changes we need to build the schools that Toronto students deserve.
What Will Our Organizing Campaign Look Like in Schools?
Starting in September 2016, ETT member-organizers trained at our Summer Institute will begin the process of having face-to-face conversations with colleagues at schools.
The focus of these conversations is to learn about members and to build relationships. The role of an organizer is not to sell the union or to exhort its virtues, but to listen to members, to find out more about how they see themselves in their workplace and to record their issues.
By December 2016, we’re aiming to have had conversations with more than 6,000 members.
With our membership fully mapped we’ll be able to harness our collective power to better identify and act on the issues that are important to us all.
What Information Organizers be Collecting?
Organizers will be collecting basic information, such as your name, school, teaching assignment, etc., as well as more detailed information about the changes you would like to see in your workplace and your most important collective bargaining issues.
This information will be used to fully map ETT’s membership.
- Organizers begin face-to-face conversations with colleagues
- Organizers continue face-to-face conversations with colleagues
- ETT General Meeting on October 25, 2016
- Organizers wrap up face-to-face conversations with colleagues
- Process begins to chart union, both internally and externally
- Mobilization capacity tested with Federation Day call out
- Process begins to analyze organizing campaign findings
- ETT General Meeting concerning ETFO Resolutions
- Mobilization capacity tested with signature drive demanding a big, open bargaining table
- Executives visit schools and worksites to discuss organizing campaign findings and upcoming contract negotiations
- Toronto wide bargaining campaign launches
- ETT begins work on issues report
- ETT General Meeting concerning the ETT Constitution
- Member, parent, and community meetings begin
- Mobilization capacity tested with petition on local demands
- Member, parent, and community meetings continue
- Open Bargaining table process (ETFO)
- Petitions developed for parents, students, and community members
- ETT General Meeting concerning budget
- Summer Organizing Institute with designated school leaders
- Contract expires on August 31, 2017
- ETFO Annual Meeting
Documents &<br /> Resources
St. Paul Federation of Teachers (SPFT)
St. Paul Federation of Teachers (SPFT) on their successes organizing and bringing the community to the bargaining table.
Download the Power of Community, a book detailing SPFT’s work with community and parents, organizing efforts, and recent successful contract campaign.